The world’s most prestigious triathlon tournament will return to Leeds for a third successive year in 2018, the sport’s bosses said today.
The International Triathlon Union (ITU) confirmed the ITU World Triathlon Series will return to the city on June 9 and 10.
Leeds joins Bermuda, Abu Dhabi, Yokohama and the Grand Final on the Gold Coast as host locations confirmed for 2018 ITU World Triathlon Series.
Last month, huge crowds of up to 70,000 cheered on the world’s best triathletes including local heroes Alistair and Jonny Brownlee, who celebrated a second successive one-two finish in Millennium Square as the city received a true triathlon takeover.
The elite races were broadcast live on the BBC with over two million people tuning in to watch the Brownlee brothers deliver a dominant performance in their home city. In the women’s race, World Champion, Flora Duffy of Bermuda won the title, receiving a huge roar from the knowledgeable crowd as she crossed the finish line on the blue carpet.
Alistair Brownlee, Olympic Champion and two-time winner of the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds, said: “The Leeds leg of the ITU World Triathlon Series has been the standout race in the series for the past two seasons and to be able to look forward to a third year in a row and go for a hat-trick of wins is really exciting.
“It’s very special to be able to race in my home city and to win in front of so many fans, is incredible.”
Leader of Leeds City Council councillor Judith Blake, added: “We are extremely proud and excited that Leeds will have the opportunity to host its third ITU World Triathlon Series event in 2018.
“The atmosphere generated by the large crowds in attendance at the 2017 Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds events was simply unbelievable and some of the best that the sport has ever seen.
“Next year’s occasion promises to be just as spectacular and we look forward to welcoming once again both athletes and spectators to the city where they can be guaranteed another huge Yorkshire welcome.”
The 2018 event will once again be supported by the National Lottery and organised by British Triathlon, in partnership with Leeds City Council, UK Sport and the ITU.
Marisol Casado, ITU president and International Olympic Committee member, said: “We are delighted to come back to Leeds, home of the Brownlee brothers, for the third year.
“It is always amazing to see the support of the people of Leeds to this event, the thousands of spectators cheering on the streets, and the city showcasing its best all over the world.
“And it will be again superb to have the greatest triathletes in the world competing here, along with thousands of amateur triathletes.”
Jack Buckner, chief executive of British Triathlon, said: “Last month was a fantastic advertisement for the sport of triathlon and I hope the millions who watched have been inspired to get involved in our sport. To have confirmation of the 2018 event, shows the level of success of the Leeds leg of the ITU World Triathlon Series and the team can’t wait to deliver another outstanding triathlon experience for everyone next year.”